This week, we try out Blades in the Dark, a whalepunk fantasy RPG about daring scoundrels trying to claw their way to the top of the criminal underworld. Since the gates of death were broken, restless spirits have roamed the streets of Doskvol, along with darker things. Safe behind the lightning fences that protect them from the gigantic demons without, the citizens of the city form a closed system of factions jockeying for power. When a corrupt Bluecoat Inspector blackmails a no-account gang into being his personal saber in Doskvol’s underworld, he is merely looking for a group of disposable (and deniable) assets, but if they play their hand right, perhaps they can turn the situation to their benefit. After he instructs them to disrupt the operations of a local faction, they decide to rob a warehouse belonging to the group, and keep the spoils for themselves. With the tacit protection of the law, will they be able to pull off the job, or will unseen forces keep them from their first payday? Listen to find out!
When a documentary filmmaker puts out a call for Takers to journey to a fallen enclave out in The Loss, The Missionaries answer! They’ll have to infiltrate Payton-Stokes Academy, a private high school designed during the paranoid days of bomb threats and active shooters, to get the footage the client wants. During The Crash, the school was an ideal spot to set up an enclave: good sight lines, tight security, backup power supply. However, because of the Romero Effect, the students and their families who took refuge there succumbed to a Vector outbreak, and the entire settlement collapsed. Whistler, Deacon and UNIX set off believing that they’re walking into an abattoir of roaming Casualties, but what they find at Payton-Stokes is far more disturbing. Can they wrap production on time and under budget, or will their simple shoot turn into a living nightmare?
For the survivors eking out a living in the enclave of Bounty, the two most essential items are water and power. Without clean water to drink from the desalination plant, the enclave would not be able to exist. Without the electricity its solar panels supply to the local enclaves, it would have nothing to trade for food and other necessities. When a power line feeding Atlantis, the enclave that controls the region’s fresh water supply, is unexpectedly severed, the leader of Bounty turns to The Missionaries to make the repair. In addition, they’ll have to set things right with Poseidon, the King of Atlantis, who insists that the interruption merits a formal apology. All goes according to plan, until a desperate plea for help from one of Atlantis’ citizens presents the Taker crew with an ethical conundrum and threatens the survival of their home enclave.
It’s the most wonderful time of the year—a time of peace and purchasing, of caring and consumerism, a season for selling. However, in the sleepy little town of Lawson, something sinister lurks among the aisles and shelves of a big box store, hoping to disrupt the hallowed spirit of capitalist fervor that has filled the hearts of the locals. When a man turns up dead and his son goes missing, it will be up to four fearless hunters to track the creature to its lair and stop the holiday terror at its source. Can they pull off a yuletide miracle with just three shopping days left to go before Christmas? Listen to find out!
One of the keys to survival out in The Loss is community—being a part of an enclave and having access to the skills and support it provides. Not every enclave that sprang up since The Crash has survived, however. Outbreaks of hot Blight have turned many former bastions of civilization into festering casualty traps. This week, The Missionaries are hired by their enclave to retrieve the plans for an energy-efficient windmill from just such a place, but when they arrive, they discover that the area’s real problem is the living. Can they extract the plans without agitating the Shepherds who have started using the place as a pen for nearby casualties? Listen to find out!